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HP LaserJet shortages continue to plague market

Microscope contributor

Hewlett-Packard's channel partners have crossed their fingers that biting laser MFP, printers and supplies shortages may ease in the next couple of months.

The shortfall in supply has been apparent since HP's fiscal Q4 which ended October last year even though production has been ramped to meet the post recession rise in demand.

All HP distributors are facing the same challenge including Computer 2000, Westcoast, ETC and Ingram Micro.

Alex Tatham, sales and marketing director at Westcoast, said it had been allocating HP MFP and standalone printers stock on a first come first serve basis and a dramatic rise in demand had exacerbated the issue.

"There has been no indication of when things will get better, maybe May," he told MicroScope.

Reseller partners are obviously hoping the situation improves sooner rather than later.

"I have about half the IPG inventory I would normally expect to have at this time of the year, with some slow signs of recovery as we move into the spring," said Andy Wright, director of vendor alliances at corporate giant SCC.

With around half of the UK business market buying HP branded printer and MFP products, "the HP customer base is very loyal and on the whole seems prepared to wait for kit to arrive," he added.

Mike Rodwell, commercial director at Computacenter, said it had been "working hard" with suppliers to secure supply and although he claimed the situation was easing, added: "We don't expect things to fully recover for another three months."

Demand has exceeded supply, said James Kite, managing director at specialist reseller Printerland, which supplies SMEs and education customers.

"It has been problematic because we have had to let down some customers, and in education for example when a printer breaks they want it replaced quickly. Manufacturers have simply underestimated demand," he said.

HP was unavailable to comment at the time of going to press.

Related Topics: Desktop PCs, VIEW ALL TOPICS

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